Feb. 16, 2006
PULLMAN, Wash. - Jim Murphy hit two home runs, the second coming with one out in the top of the 10th inning, as Washington State held off a late comeback bid by Hawaii-Hilo to defeat the Vulcans, 13-12, in the first game of a doubleheader Thursday afternoon at Wong Stadium. In the nightcap, Wayne Daman matched his career-high of nine strikeouts in seven innings of work while Jay Miller had three hits to lead WSU to the sweep with a 9-7 victory.
With the pair of victories the Cougars improve to 5-1 on the season while the Vulcans fall to 2-10.
In the first game WSU led 12-2 entering the bottom of the eighth before the Vulcans put up four runs in the inning then six more in the ninth to tie the game. The Cougars committed two errors in the final inning as all six runs were unearned.
The Cougars jumped out early as Jeff Miller and Mike Gilbert had RBI singles in the second inning for a 2-0 lead. After Hilo cut the lead in half in the third on a run-scoring wild pitch, WSU broke the game open with 10 runs over the next five innings for a 12-2 lead. Murphy launched his first home run of the day in the fourth, a two-run shot to center field that pushed to lead to 4-1. Jared Prince and had an RBI single in the fifth followed by a Paul Gran RBI double in the sixth to stretch the lead.
Jay Miller added a two-run double in the seventh while Nick Hall drilled a pinch-hit, two-run home run in the eighth for WSU. The Vulcans did not quit as they strung together five hits in the bottom of the eighth to cut the lead to 12-6. In the ninth Hilo tied the game on a Tyler Curtis single to right, followed by an error that allowed two runs to score. With Curtis on third representing the winning run, Travis Webb struck out Ryan Taiariol to send the game into extra innings.
With one out in the 10th, Murphy drilled the game-winner over the left field fence, his fourth hit of the afternoon and his third RBI.
For the game WSU pounded out a season-high 21 hits, its highest hit total since connecting for 21 almost a year ago, Feb. 24, 2005, at Hawaii. Murphy led the way with four hits and three runs scored, while Jeff Miller, Gilbert and Gran each collected three hits.
On the mound Reese Baker started and worked seven innings, allowing two runs, one earned, on eight hits with four strikeouts. David Roberts pitched the eighth while Webb allowed six runs, all unearned, on five hits in the ninth before retiring the Vulcans in order one inning later to earn the victory.
In the nightcap, Daman was sharp for his second straight outing, allowing just one run in his seven innings as he improved to 2-0. He was staked to a 4-0 lead in the second as Travis Coulter connected for a three-run home run to right with one out in the inning. The next batter, Jeff Miller, hit his second long ball of the season, a solo shot to left center.
In the sixth the lead was extended to 7-0 as Greg Lagreid and Coulter each had RBI singles. Hilo got on the board in the seventh when Dayne Ogawa drew a bases-loaded walk off Daman, then added two more in the eighth on a two-run single off the bat of A.J. Satele.
The Cougars added two runs in the ninth on RBIs from Zach McAngus and Hall. As it turned out they would need the runs as Hilo put up four runs in the bottom of the ninth before Matt Oye closed out the Vulcans with the tying run at the plate.
Oye was the third Cougar pitcher in the contest as Ross Humes relieved Daman in the eighth, working 1/3 of an inning, giving up two runs on four hits. Oye went the rest of the way surrendering five hits while striking out two. Offensively, WSU pounded out 14 hits, three from Jay Miller, while Coulter finished the game with four RBIs.
These same two teams continue their four-game series with a single game Friday afternoon. First pitch is scheduled for 3 p.m. HST (5 p.m. PST).